News & Events

The Cranberry Scoop

The Chair’s Message
Stephanie Stevens, RN

I was recently told that Taunton State Hospital is a step-down facility for the criminally insane! Bridgewater State Hospital inmates, released from a higher security setting at Bridgewater but still in need of hospital level care, are sent to Taunton State Hospital before transitioning to the community. Not only am I surprised to hear this…I’m deeply concerned for our fellow nurses. The frequency of violent acts in healthcare facilities is alarming. The MNA Violence Prevention Campaign which began this month and culminates on Lobby Day, March 31 at the State House could not have been more timely…

The MNA took a stand against Workplace Violence in Healthcare Settings before the turn of this century. Its credo: In Healthcare or Anywhere: Violence is NOT part of the job. In their Position Statement, the MNA Workplace Violence and Abuse Prevention Task Force addressed the prevalence of violence in healthcare settings and clearly stated what the union can do to help victims of workplace violence and abuse:

MNA bargaining units are encouraged to address Workplace Violence and Abuse Prevention in contract language with their employers. Sample contract language is available by contacting the MNA health and safety program.

Plan a system for addressing workplace violence and abuse and helping those who have become victims:

Encourage the victim to:
Report the incident
Talk about the incident
Follow the 10 Actions If Assaulted Plan *
Contact the MNA for support


Show that you care by:
Providing non-judgmental listening
Deflecting self blame
Helping with police reports
Keep in contact by phone or visiting

 The Massachusetts Victim Bill of Rights assures that the rights of individuals who are victims of assault and aggression at work are protected. The MNA believes that employers have a responsibility to provide safe and healthful working conditions in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) of 1970. This includes preventing and addressing conditions that lead to violence and abuse by implementing effective security and administrative work practices to protect the safety and health of workers.

The MNA recommends that all healthcare employers implement a Workplace Violence Prevention Program that is consistent with OSHA Guidelines for Preventing Workplace Violence to Health Care and Social Service Workers.

* contact MNA for the details of this Plan

OSHA identifies the following key components of a Workplace Violence Prevention program:

  1. Management commitment and employee involvement
  2. Worksite hazard analysis
  3. Hazard prevention and control
  4. Safety and health training for workers, managers and supervisors including where and how to report injuries
  5. Post incident debriefing activities including appropriate evaluation and treatment of all workers affected by an incident of violence
  6. Accurate recordkeeping and frequent evaluation of the program by employees and management Additionally, MNA believes the Workplace Violence Prevention Program should include:
  7. Policies that address harassment and bullying
  8. Methods for detection, confiscation and control of firearms and weapons from anyone (other than law enforcement officers) who enters the facility

Security guards trained according to national standards The MNA has developed a comprehensive package of legislation designed to address the crisis of violence in hospitals.

Your legislator needs to hear from you!

  • Prevent the Violence: An Act Requiring Health Care Employers to Develop and Implement Programs to Prevent Workplace Violence (SB988) filed by Rep. Costello and Sen.Timilty.
  • Punish the Offenders: An Act Relative to Assault and Battery on Health Care Providers (HB1696/SB1753) filed by Rep. Rodrigues and Sen. M. Moore.
  • Manage Chronic Risks: An Act Relative to Creating a Difficult to Manage Unit within the Department of Mental Health (HB1931) filed by Rep. Haddad.

Violence in hospitals has reached epidemic proportions. What can you do about it?

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Region Three 2010 Council Meeting Schedule
(Meeting dates have changed to the third Tuesday of the month— no meetings July and August)

  • February 16, 2010
  • March 16, 2010
  • April 20, 2010
  • May 18, 2010
  • June 15, 2010
  • September 21, 2010
  • October 19, 2010
  • November 16, 2010
  • December 21, 2010

Start time is 6PM at the Region 3 office. Members are welcome to attend— please notify the Region 3 office.

Winter—Spring 2010, Region 3 Continuing Education Programs


  • March 3 Region 3 State House Drop —MNA Violence Prevention Campaign in Boston
  • March 24 CE—Accepting, Rejecting, and Delegating a Work Assignment in Bourne, MA
  • March 24 & 25 8th Annual Labor Leader Summit
  • March 31 MNA Lobby Day—Workplace Violence Campaign at the State House, Boston
  • April 13 CE—Infectious Diseases Update: TB and Hepatitis in Bourne, MA
  • May 20 CE—Neurological Complications: Nursing Management in Bourne, MA
  • June 3 5th Annual Deb Walsh Memorial OB/GYN Lecture Series – Bourne, MA
  • Oct 13—15 MNA Convention – Worcester, MA

2009 – 10 Regional Council Three Members & Staff

  • Chair – Stephanie Stevens: Sandwich, Jordan Hospital
    Chair, MNA Board of Directors
  • *Vice-Chair – Peggy Kilroy: Centerville, Cape Cod
  • Treasurer – Rick Lambos: Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard
    Hospital Chair
  • *Secretary – Lauren Johnson-Lavender: Mashpee,
    Falmouth Hospital
  • Louise Bombardieri: Pembroke, Brockton VNA Co-Chair
    *Trudy Bull: East Falmouth, Falmouth Hospital
  • Deb Caruso: Brewster, Cape Cod VNA Chair
    Janet DeMoranville: Lakeville, Morton Hospital Chair
  • Ellen Farley: Middleboro, Unit 7 Chair Designee,
    MNA Board of Directors
  • Jean Lessard: Brockton, Brockton VNA Co-Chair
    *Kathy Metzger: Taunton, Brockton Hospital Chair,
    MNA Board of Directors
  • Joanne Murphy: West Wareham, Jordan Hospital
    Chair Designee
  • Nicky Powderly: Forestdale, Falmouth Hospital Chair
    Shannon Sherman: Yarmouth Port, Cape Cod
    Hospital Chair

* elected

Pat Conway: Office Manager
Barbara ‘Cookie’ Cooke: Community Organizer

We’d love to hear from you!

The Cranberry Scoop is published four times per year by Regional Council 3. It is a publication made available to MNA Region 3 members as a means of communicating information and topics of interest relative to our region and we invite members to submit writings to the newsletter, especially through the editorial voice.

We reserve the right to edit all submissions for brevity, content and clarity. Include a daytime and evening telephone number.

Email to or please sign your submission and mail to:

MNA Region 3
P O Box 1363

MNA membership dues deductibility for 2009

The table below shows the amount and percentage of MNA dues that may not be deducted from federal income taxes. Federal law disallows the portion of membership dues used for lobbying expenses.

What’s the Scoop?

Unit 7—Negotiations remain at a standstill with the closures and the economy being targeted as the rationale. Currently, the State is in the process of conducting RIFs (reduction in force) due to the closing of Quincy Mental Health Center which is done and Westboro which is still in the process of closing. The scheduled retirements and voluntary layoffs should be completed by the end of January. The bumping process has been ongoing and will continue through the closing of Westboro.

Due to the increase in workplace violence, we are looking for Unit 7 people to share their stories on capwiz on the MNA webpage. We are also looking for members to participate in Lobby Day at the State House on March 31, 2010.

Respectfully submitted, Ellen Farley, Chair Designee


Martha’s Vineyard Hospital—The new hospital is now slated to open in May 2010 due to unanticipated construction delays. We’re trying to work with management to assure an increased level of security in the new facility, especially in areas that The Joint Commission & OHSA designate as "security sensitive".

We are also looking for RNs that are interested in running for the MNA Nurse Committee this spring. We have 9 elected positions from all the nursing units; 1 for Acute Care, 1 for ICU, 1 for OBS, 1 for ER, 1 for OR, 1 for ERDS/Card Rehab/ Coding, 1 Per Diem, and 2 At-Large (from any unit). The Nurse Committee oversees contract negotiations and other issues that surround contract interpretation. Please look for unit posting, coming soon, and contact Rick Lambos if you are interested. We will be preparing for negotiations this summer for the contract that expires in mid-September.

Respectfully submitted, Rick Lambos, Chair


Cape Cod Hospital is gearing up for negotiations this upcoming summer. We have been very active in addressing understaffing/high pt acuity problems amongst some of the more critical units at the hospital. We are also extremely determined to make the union’s presence more visible while encouraging more staff to get involved, even if it is in a small way. We feel strongly that the union is only as good as its members’ involvement and that the greatest benefits experienced will come from a group-wide initiative, especially in these hard economic times. We are also working on charitable avenues to focus on this spring.

Respectfully submitted, Shannon Sherman, Chair

Brockton Hospital—We have come to a tentative agreement and have scheduled a meeting for ratification on February 11th. This agreement comes with the committee’s recommendation.

Respectfully submitted, Kathy Metzger, Chair


VNA of Cape Cod— We have ratified our contract w/2% retro to top step and additional 2% step on next year anniversary date. All others continue in step w/ 4% raises annually through 2yr contract. Working conditions are an ongoing work in progress. Discussion with management has resulted in the agency posting more positions for case managers and floats in all 3 areas of the Cape. Labor management meetings now resume, as negotiations are settled. We are hoping to arrive at resolutions to some of the issues identified over the course of this past summer and fall . We have an outstanding grievance due to the agency not calling a storm day on the last storm day , the no name blizzard, that affected many areas. We are working hard to incorporate the new Medicare guidelines that come with the new year into our daily assessments and evaluations. I continue to encourage our members to bring any concerns to our attention, and ask to have representation by your site representative, or myself for any kind of disciplinary meeting with management. It is your right and your benefit to have someone with you, not only for support, but to be that second pair of ears that hears what is actually being said to you.

Respectfully submitted, Deb Caruso, Chair


Caritas Good Samaritan Hospital is bargaining now and it has been productive. We started Jan 6th 2010. The issues important to the members are wages, pension and health insurance and retirement for eligible nurses. We also have been meeting about issues concerning the Emergency Department relative to staffing and mandatory overtime. We feel we are making progress. We have extended the current contract through Feb 28th 2010. We are working on proposals and have made an economic proposal for a two year contract.

Respectfully submitted, Karen Gavigan, Co-Chair

Some Things You Should Know…

Application Deadline: June 1, 2010 The Massachusetts Nurses Foundation is a non-profit organization, established in 1981, whose mission is to support scholarship & research in nursing and healthcare professions. The primary goal of the MNF is to advance the profession of nursing and healthcare by supporting the education of nurses. The MNF raises funds and dispenses scholarships & grants to qualified recipients who have applied for assistance to further their careers or study clinical issues that are essential to the improvement of health care. The MNF awards numerous scholarships each year to MNA members. Some scholarships are even available to members’ children and spouses/partners.

Please review eligibility requirements and criteria for each scholarship that you apply for.

  • Rosemary Smith Scholarship for MNA Members seeking advanced degree in nursing, labor studies or public health policy (1 @ $1500).
  • School Nurse Scholarships for MNA Members enrolled in an accredited program related to school health issues (1 @ $1500).
  • Unit 7 RN pursuing higher education (1 @ $1000)
  • Unit 7 HCP pursuing higher education (1 @ $1000)
  • Regional Council Five Scholarship for child of an MNA Member pursuing higher education (other than nursing) (5 @ $2000)
  • Regional Council Five Scholarship for child of an MNA Member pursuing a nursing degree (5 @ $2000)
  • Regional Council Five Scholarship to an MNA Member’s spouse/significant other pursuing a nursing degree (1 @ $1000)
  • Janet Dunphy Scholarship —MNA Region 5 Member pursuing Baccalaureate Degree (5 @ $2000)
  • Janet Dunphy Scholarship—MNA Region 5 Member pursuing Masters Degree (2 @ $2000)
  • Janet Dunphy Scholarship—MNA Region 5 Member pursuing Doctoral Degree (2 @ $2000)
  • Regional Council Four Scholarship for MNA Member pursuing a nursing degree/higher education (5 @ $1500)
  • Regional Council Three Scholarship for MNA Member pursuing MSN/PhD (3 @ $1500)
  • Regional Council Three Scholarship for MNA Member pursuing a BSN (3 @ $1500)
  • Regional Council Three Scholarship for MNA Member’s child pursuing BSN (4 @ $1000)
  • Regional Council Two Scholarship for MNA Member’s children pursuing nursing degree (5 @ $1000)
  • Regional Council Two Scholarship for MNA Member pursuing nursing degree/higher education (3 @ $1000)
  • Carol Vigeant Scholarship for entry level nursing student in the Worcester area (1 @ $2000)
  • Kate Maker Scholarship for entry level nursing student in the Worcester area (1 @ $2500)
  • Regional Council One Scholarship for MNA Member’s children pursuing nursing degree (1 @ $1000)
  • Annual Faulkner Hospital School of Nursing Alumnae Scholarship (2 @ $1000) An entry level scholarship for students pursuing an AD or BS degree.
    Preference will be given to applicants who are lineal descendants of FHSON alumnae; second preference given to all others.

Reduced MNA Dues Rates are available to those who qualify and apply

Subject to verification, members who qualify for one of the following categories may elect to pay 75 percent of the annual dues:

  1. Health professional labor program member—any health care professional, other than a registered nurse, who is represented for purposes of collective bargaining by MNA;
  2. Limited hours labor program member—any labor program member who is represented for purposes of collective bargaining by MNA and who has 988 or fewer hours paid in the preceding calendar year. It is the responsibility of any registered nurse and/or other health care professional to verify to the satisfaction of MNA on an annual basis his/her eligibility for 75 percent dues category within any of the foregoing categories by April 1 of each year. Upon receipt of such verification of eligibility in the prior calendar year, the member shall receive the reduced dues rate effective the following July 1 through June 30.

Download the Application
Application Deadline: April 1, 2010


Time and time again, we hear stories about the use of a defibrillator saving someone’s life; like the hotel guest that was saved by the vacationing firefighter in Yarmouth last year – luckily, the hotel kept an AED on premises. Then there was the child at a local skating rink…a tragedy prevented because someone happened to have a portable AED in their car…

These and other similar stories prompted the MNA Regional Councils to help defray the cost for non-profit entities to have an AED on their premises. Non-profits, with 25 or more members, are eligible to receive reimbursement of half the cost of an AED (up to $800) through a simple application process. If you know of any entity that would be interested in this valuable benefit, please encourage them to contact the Regional office for more information. 508.888.5774

Labor School offers Tracks in 2 Day Sessions! …and Continues Evening Class Tracks

In an effort to accommodate the myriad schedules MNA members have, the Labor Division has restructured some of the Labor School Tracks into 2 day-long sessions but will continue to offer those Tracks in the evening class structure as well. This Spring, Tom Breslin (Associate Director/Educator) will conduct Track 5 in Region 3 in both the 5 evening class and 2 day-long class configuration. Track 5 is particularly helpful to those in leadership who are making efforts to motivate member involvement, improve communications within the unit and increase member awareness of union activities, services and benefits. But any member will find these programs to be a great opportunity to meet colleagues, share information and experiences, and explore the interesting mechanics of your union and professional organization.

Tom Breslin has also offered to provide customized, targeted training sessions for any bargaining unit within the region that may wish to gather a committee or other group to focus on a particular topic for instruction. These sessions could be held at either the region office or some other convenient location. If your have any interest in arranging such a program, please contact the regional office at 508.888.5774.

Download the PDF of this newsletter to register.